A short story set firmly in reality, told to illustrate a moralor religious lesson .
Instead of laying down rules for people to follow, Jesus toldstories. Everybody had diff…erent understandings of his stories andmatched them to their everyday lives and morals. These stories werecalled "parables" and there were many of them. Jesus loved the ideaof 'love and mercy' and he spent more time with the sick and illthan the rich and important to show love. Many of his parablesshared the same ideas like "The Return of the Prodigal Son," astory about two sons and their father. One son was alwaysmisbehaving and never obeyed his father's rules, while the otherson was always obedient and he ended up taking over the familybusiness. When the disobedient son was old enough, he left thehouse and lost touch with the family. After two years, thetroublesome son realized that he was acting out of character and itwas time for him to grow up. He pleaded to come back home and hisfather accepted. The biggest party was to be thrown for his return.The father ordered the biggest calf and threw a huge feast to leteverybody know that his son had returned. The obedient son wasshocked and upset at the hearing of this because he was always goodand a party like this was never thrown for him. The fatherexplained to his son why he had done this and the son understood.If you thought about it with no effort, you would receive theconclusion that the story is about not being jealous if you don'tknow the full story which is an adequate conclusion. But if you duga little more into the story, you would see that it is about howeverybody loses their way and its all about helping them get backup. If you looked from the father's point of view, you might evenget that you must accept and embrace everybody with equality. Jesushad an amazing and unique idea and he fulfilled it to his bestability. Another answer: Parables are allegorical illustrations intended to teach God'sservants about different facets regarding the coming Kingdom ofGod. On the surface they say one thing... but for the present timedispensation that God has allotted to mankind for the working outof His plan of Salvation, the " True meaning " of them isintended to be lost on most people who hear them. In fact, untilJesus explained them " plainly and clearly " to Hisdisciples IN PRIVATE SESSIONS... even THEY didn't understand them! "The same day went Jesus out of the [His] house, and sat by the seaside. And great multitudes were gathered together unto Him... AndHe spake many things unto them IN PARABLES..." (Matt.13:1-3 KJV ). Like everyone else... the disciples were confused and puzzled overJesus' strange story-telling approach; and asked Him about it: "His disciples came and asked Him, 'Why do you always tell stories[parables]when you talk to the people?'" (verse 10 NLT New Living Translation ) "Then He explained to them, 'You have been permitted tounderstand the SECRETS OF THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN , but OTHERS HAVE NOT . To those who areopen to My teaching, more Understanding will be given, and theywill have abundance of Knowledge. But to those who are notlistening, even what they have will be taken away from them. "That is why I tell stories, because people see what I do, but theydont' really see. They hear what I say, but they don't really hear,and they don't understand. This fulfills the prophecy of Isaiah,which says: "You will hear My Words, but you will not understand; you will seewhat I do, but you will not perceive its meaning. For the hearts ofthese people are hardened, and their ears cannot hear, and theirhearts cannot understand, and they cannot turn to Me and LET MEHEAL THEM.' "But BLESSED ARE YOUR EYES, because THEY SEE; and YOUR EARS,because THEY HEAR... (verses 11-16). The parables of Jesus Christ in the Bible are illustrative stories[perhaps entertaining to some] designed to reveal the "mysteriesand Truth of the coming Kingdom of God: "...the Kingdom of Heaven is like..." (Matt.13:24, 31, 33). "Jesus always used stories and illustration like these whenspeaking to the crowds. In fact, He never spoke to them WITHOUTusing such parables." (verse 34) Jesus' disciples went to Him, privately, after the crowds weredispersed, to learn for themselves what the parables meant...because THEY didn't know, EITHER! "Then, leaving the crowds outside, Jesus went into the [His] house.His disciples said, 'Please explain the story of the weeds in thefield.'" (verse 36) The parables of the Bible are God's revealing of Hisplan of salvation to HIS SERVANTS ... who are able to"hear His voice;" who come to Him, privately, in prayer [as well astheir personal study of the Bible]; stories that the rest of theworld remains for the time being unable to understand. Anyone CAN understand them -- but only if they can BELIEVE whatJesus SAYS: "'Alright,' He said, 'I, the Son of Man, am the Farmer who plantsthe Good Seed. The field is the world, and the Good Seed representsthe people of the Kingdom. The weeds are the people who belong tothe evil one. The enemy who planted the weeds among the wheat isthe Devil. The harvest is the end of the world [the 'age'; theconclusion of God's plan], and the harvesters are the angels. Justas the weeds are separated out and burned, so it will be at the endof the world [age]. I, the Son of Man, will send My angels, andthey will remove from My Kingdom everything that causes sin and allwho do evil, and they will throw them into the furnace and burnthem. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Then the Godlywill shine like the sun in their Father's Kingdom. Anyone who isWILLING TO HEAR should listen and Understand.'" (verses 37-43) (MORE)